Friday, November 26, 2010

Intergalactica with Hannah Buchanan

We chatted with grad Hannah about her Intergalactica collection and her plans for 2011.

First thought when you saw your collection on the catwalk?

Relief! I was so tense through the parade leading up to the moment when my outfits were on stage. It wasn't until all my garments had been shown that I was able to breathe again! I kept having thoughts that something would fall apart or come out wrong, but everything was fine. It was so exhilarating to see the last six months of my life up on a catwalk for everyone to see and have my family and friends there watching. After the parade it was such a strange feeling, I think everyone felt a bit lost and wasn't sure what to do, producing our collections had completely consumed our lives. It also meant that the last three years of study was over and we were ready to go onto our next adventures, which is a bit daunting.

Why do you love fashion?
I can’t imagine myself doing anything but fashion. It excites me. I think I’m lucky to be in a field that doesn’t feel like work and I can look forward to it every day. To me fashion is like a fairytale. That’s the only way I can describe the overwhelming feeling when I see a designer’s collection that is so outrageous and fascinating, it doesn’t seem real. To wear something that makes you feel fabulous can completely change your mood and confidence, it can be really empowering.

What plans are in the pipeline for 2011?
Next year, I hope to gain employment within the Adelaide fashion industry. I will have my own creative outlet through selling my designs at the Gilles St Market, North Adelaide Market, or online in my own time.

Style muse?
To be honest I don't a have any one person who is my style muse. When I design clothes, I get inspired by designers who continually push boundaries and have original, extraordinary designs. Viktor and Rolf are amazing at this; each collection is bigger and better than the previous, and they always surprise. They give me something to strive for. When I’m designing I always look back and question if my ideas are different and unusual. I guess ultimately I design things that I'd love to wear, not necessarily realistically or in everyday life, but imagining what I’d wear if I was...

Like what you see, contact Hannah on and we’ll keep you posted on her 2011 online venture!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Behind the makeup

We caught up with TAFE SA beauty lecturer and makeup artist Grace who worked behind the scenes during the Adelaide Fashion Festival with Dale Dorning - creating the gorgeous makeup looks paraded on the catwalk.

What was the highlight for you working with Dale at the Adelaide Fashion Festival?
Dale is well recognised within the industry of makeup and also the celebrity world and having observed him I have a higher respect for his skill, professionalism, mentoring and imparting information. He has a great skill of producing effective makeup without looking made up. Having worked on the many parades (indoor, outdoor, day and evening) he has helped me see makeup for the various events through his eyes.

Favourite event?
Boutique Runway at Bonython Hall, the makeup was perfection. The ambience of the hall followed through with the look that was created - flawless skin, vibrant purple glitter on lower eyes and nude lips.

Describe working behind the scenes at the TAFE fashion parade?
Dale and I had reproduced the looks prior to the event. Each look was passed onto the individual makeup artist, so at the event the backstage everyone was calm and confident. We had lots of talking and laughter with each other and the models. We mostly worked on different makeup areas – production line style - so we had every model looking the same.

What do you love about working in the beauty industry?
I love working in the beauty industry as we are forever learning and expanding our knowledge with new services and products. I really enjoy the client interaction and providing not only services but my knowledge onto them.

Tips for students wanting to work as a makeup artist in the fashion industry?
Explore the industry and chat with professional makeup artists .Try to shadow them during their work so that you can see the various talents they all have, try to help out or just observe the behind the scenes at fashion parades or photographic shoots, so you can build your knowledge. Get confident in all areas of make up – practice, practice, practice until you get confident.

What beauty product can you not live without?
Tinted moisturiser – fantastic base for any look.

Trends for summer makeup?
Colour –lips and nails, either soft colour to bold and bright.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Win an outfit from the Gilles Street Market Collection

You have the chance to win an outfit from the TAFE SA second year fashion design students’ exclusive Gilles Street Market collection.

The outfit up for grabs is a white cotton elastane singlet with feather and chain detailing on the back and a cute pair of charcoal shorts with a paper bag waist.

All you have to do is tell us in 25 words or less where you would wear this cute summer combo, along with your dress size so we can send out the right fit for you!

Don’t forget TAFE SA students will be selling their fashion lines at the Gilles Street Market on 5 and 12 December.

To enter:
1. Go to the Fashion at TAFE SA Facebook and share the page and competition with all your friends.
2. Send us an email at with where you would wear this cute outfit, your dress size and your daytime contact phone number.

The competition closes Friday 26 November at 12pm (noon), and the winner with the best answer as judged by our panel will be notified via phone or email.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Lingerie designer Lani De Beer

We had a tête-à-tête with Lecturers Choice winner Lani on her love of designing lingerie and dream to design for Victoria's Secret!

Why do you love fashion?

Fashion to me is way of expressing yourself. To me the most important part of my wardrobe is my Lingerie and the shoes to match! I love the way it makes you feel. Sexy, confident, sweet, seductive and ready to take on anything that comes your way! Lingerie is your foundation, your base - whether you wear it just as under wear or if you decide to show a little peek through your outfit. I love in current trends wearing your lingerie as outerwear and how lingerie inspires new beautiful fashion.

Plans for Adelaide, Australia and/or beyond?
Now that I've graduated, I'm ready to take on the world. I am aiming to relocate to Sydney in February next year, where I hopefully will be picked up by a Lingerie company. It would be a great experience to work for established company and learn and learn as much as my brain will allow. I want to go to Europe and check out all the little boutiques, then to America where I would love to work with Victoria’s Secret. In the years to come I would like to start up my own lingerie label and create timeless fantasy pieces with classy style and perfect fit.

What was the highlight of your course?
I can't believe that three years have gone! But with highlights like the SAJC spring race carnival where the whole class designed and constructed two outfits each that were displayed in our very first parade! My first outfit was an ivory satin and lace knee length dress inspired by a lady, who was very sophisticated and proper. My second outfit was a black satin and purple lace, skirt and bodice combo inspired by a punk princess. Our class did a project runway type assignment at the beginning of the year where we designed and constructed for most of us our first swimmers in two weeks. The garments were then displayed in an exhibition along side Jets, Zimmerman and Seafolly. My swimmers were a 1950s sailor inspired one piece. And of course the biggest highlight of all was our graduating night where we showcased six outfits each in a showstopping parade part of the Adelaide Fashion Festival. My lingerie collection Garden Affair was inspired by a Victorian lady sitting in a spring blossoming spring garden, eating delicate delights awaiting her lover.

On winning the Lecturers Choice Award.
On my graduation I was extremely excited to find out that I had won the 2010 Lecturers Choice Award! I had no idea until they announced my name on stage! I won a trip to Melbourne to do a five day pattern making course with Gerber. I think that this is a great opportunity that I'm grateful for. I think the knowledge will definitely contribute to me going further in my career - which I can't wait to start.

Advice to future fashion designers on pursuing this career?
If I had any advice to give to any future fashion designers, it would be don't settle for second best. If you have an idea make it work, experiment, and try new things. Think outside the box and be open minded to constructive criticism, while staying true to you. Take every opportunity to learn and grow - there is so much to take in. And when you see your vision up there for the whole world to see you know that all those long hours and hard work have definitely paid off :)

Style muse/inspiration.
When it comes to being inspired I always have my key inspirations wallpaper, chandeliers, crockery, and anything vintage. I love the 1950s pin up girl who is sweet yet submissive. I think the old Hollywood glamour of the 1930s is classic and elegant. I'm very passionate about dance and the theatre too, the costumes and the fantasy they create. We can't forget the Victorian period which my current collection Garden Affair was strongly influenced by. I take these key inspirations and infuse them with everything else that inspires me including current trends, something I might see on a walk in the park, down the beach or in a movie. I try to utilise all my resources and let my imagination run away.

To find out more about Lani's designs head to her facebook page.

Monday, November 15, 2010

50s fashion with Miss Meg

We chatted with the lovely Meg about her 50s inspired label Miss Meg, all things fashion and being awarded the photography prize with George Philippo Photography.

Why do you love fashion?

A quote I found, that I love and best describes me, which I have carried around with me for the past 3 years..."Sewing fills my days, not to mention the living room, bedroom and closets". Fashion is my drive. Fashion is what gets me up every morning. Choosing an outfit for the day, it makes you feel good about yourself. It gives a person a way to express themselves without having to say how they’re feeling. I have always been quite good at art, so drawing designs comes naturally to me. The best feeling is knowing you’ve been able to transform a drawing on a piece of paper to a beautiful garment, and then worn as a piece of art. My “Miss Meg” label is conservative, but with an edge. It embraces a woman’s curves by being sexy and slim fitting, while still being conventional. Having a 50s edge gives the clothing a unique sense of style in a way that will make any woman feel confident and stand out from the crowd.

Plans for Adelaide, Australia and/or beyond?
At the moment I'd like to stay in Adelaide and eventually sell interstate as my label grows, but Australia is where I want to be. I believe in Australian-made garments, so I have no plans of off-shore manufacturing in future. I dream of seeing myself in places like Milan, but for now, little Australia is my home. I plan of selling online and in boutiques and possibly developing my own store in future. In the meantime I have work experience lined up with Joy Taylor, designer behind Hot Couture, where I feel I can learn a lot from the way she runs her business and communicates with clients.

What was the highlight of the course?
Well of course I’m going to say the End of Year Parade!! The past couple of months have been very hectic, but to finally see all your work completed and on show for everyone to see, you feel proud and a sense of accomplishment. I can’t believe those three years have just flown by, it seemed only yesterday that I applied for Fashion Design. This year’s graduates were a fantastic group, so many unique students with their own sense of style and presence. The fashion course is getting better and better every year as they develop new concepts. It is most definitely a course to consider.

Advice to future fashion designers on pursuing this career?
Hang in there and always put in 110% on everything you do. If fashion is your life, then three years of study is nothing compared to what you’re going to achieve when you’ve completed. Seeing your collection on the runway is a feeling not many people get to experience, having your garments oooh’d and aaah’d over is great feeling. Always be organised and prepare to take criticism, as that is what will help you grow as a designer.

On winning the photography prize.
Once I have completely finished with TAFE SA after the next two weeks I will be getting in contact with George Philippo again and arrange a time for the shoot. I met him the night of the parade and he seems like a friendly guy, so I am looking forward to our collaboration together. I am so excited! Having a professional shoot will help showcase my range to potential customers and will be great to show in my portfolio. A great start in getting my name out there!

Style muse/inspiration.
My inspiration behind my contemporary 1950s label is the beautiful Christina Aguilera. I absolutely adore her in her music video 'Candy Man'. I love the sexiness and edginess the young women had in the 50s. Since the 50s, which Vogue called 'the formative years of the century' - fashion has never really been the same. Mass production, the introduction of synthetic fabrics and the comparative wealth of the late fifties enabled the average British woman to be one of the best dressed women in the world. The young continued to demand clothes to suit a teenage market. The silhouettes of the garments, the hair, the shoes! What an amazing era to live in - so why not bring it all back?

To find out more about Meg’s designs head to Megan Leigh Designs or Miss Meg for her 50s inspired fashion label.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Alexandra Ireland - Glam Adelaide prize winner

We caught up with Ally who was awarded the highly commended fashion student prize on Saturday night. Next year, thanks to our sponsor Glam Adelaide, Ally will be fashion blogger on their website which is a great launching pad for her label Necia.

Why fashion?

I believe fashion to be an expression of ones personality and style. I love the thought of my clothes bringing out a confidence and unique personal style in a woman. After studying Visual Arts experimenting with all kinds of artistic subjects like photography, jewellery, sketching, painting, sculpture and more, I developed an interest in the subject of textiles, and from there went on to find my true love of fashion.

Inspiration for your collection?
My graduate collection was inspired by late fashion and style icon Isabella Blow. Her tragic yet inspiring life got my creative design juices flowing to create an evening wear collection with a mysterious and quirky twist. Her outrageous and larger than life personality masked an inner pain. I have used sheer fabrics to symbolise failed attempt to mask her inner pain, she was still transparent to those around her. My collection portrays the tragic aspects of this style icon’s life and how she hid them behind an emotional mask.

What was the highlight of your course?
The highlight of my course would be a combination of the inspirational people I have met and studied alongside for three years, and of course our graduate parade!

Your reaction to winning the 2010 TAFE SA Fashion Design Student Highly Commended award.
When I was announced the winner of the highly commended award I was absolutely delighted! It was an emotional and extremely satisfying feeling to know that my hard work and determination had paid off. I am extremely grateful to Glam Adelaide for giving me this incredible blog and advertising package.

Plans for Adelaide, Australia and/or beyond?
I plan to set up my own label Necia in Adelaide and make a name for myself here, stocking my clothes in boutiques as well as setting up Necia Boutiques around Australia. Entering the international market is a really long term goal that I would love to explore once my business has been successful in Australia.

Advice to future fashion designers on pursuing this career?
Work really hard! You need to be prepared to put in 110%. It is not an easy industry to get into, and can sometimes be more about who you know than what you know, but determination and perseverance will be the key to being successful.

Style muse.
As a designer I am inspired by obscure and beautiful things. I like to design outside the box, and keep a unique twist on the modern day confident woman. I like working with structure and enhancing a woman’s body shape. My clothes are designed to make a woman feel confident and sexy with a unique twist. Relaxed but dressy, feminine but with an edge.

To find out more about Ally's label Necia visit her facebook page.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Student of the Year - Brenton Drechsler

We caught up with Student of the Year recipient Brenton Drechsler after the TAFE SA Fashion Graduate parade sponsored by Glam Adelaide on his collection and heading off to Hong Kong!

Why fashion?
Fashion is the medium that I feel fits me best. After experimenting with other artistic mediums such as photography, painting and architecture I concluded back in 2006 that I could get my ideas and feelings across best by way of apparel. The thrill of seeing people wearing my clothes is an added bonus.

Inspiration for your collection?
My favourite colour - emerald and the works of George Gross and Harry Watt. Also the marvellous and stylish women I have met over the years. Women with understated elegance who wear their clothes with confidence.

What was the highlight of your course?
Getting to study with an inspiring group of women and men who kept me on my toes at all time.

Your reaction to winning the 2010 TAFE SA Fashion Design student of the year.
A little bit of awe, a little bit of "oh my goodness" and a little bit of pride. I'm glad I got to make my family, friends and industry colleagues proud of me. Their congratulations post award has been overwhelming - thank you everyone!

What you are looking forward to about Hong Kong fashion week?
The chance to enhance/capitalise on the experiences and contacts I made on my previous trip to HK in June/July. I'm looking forward to seeing all things fashion through better experienced eyes and not as a "new-comer." Oh and maybe to go shopping at H&M and Zara again. Everyone has a weakness.

Plans for Adelaide, Australia and/or beyond?
You bet. I wish to be an Ambassador for South Australian fashion in the years to come - on a world wide platform no less. I intend to show the world another reason why they should pay attention to our beautiful state. I plan to start small/medium and build up a brand via online. Face to face retail outlets are on the cards long-term. Integrity, respect for my peers and customers, staying true to my design philosophies (chic, clean, contemporary, classic) and a chance to hear what the consumer wants/needs is key to the success of my brand.

Advice to future fashion designers on pursuing this career?
Stick at it. Overcome all obstacles in order to proceed through study and forward into the industry. Try not to step on too many people on the way and always believe in your talent. To win this award and graduate with my vastly talented peers was perhaps the most amazing moment to date in my life.

Style muse.

Rebecca Lawrence of course - a beautiful person inside and out. And my Mum and Grandmas "it's never too warm for a cardigan!"

Thank you so much to the TAFE SA Institute Council and Glam Adelaide for their support and sponsorship in making our graduation a huge success.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

WIN front row tickets to the matinee parade

Want to sit front row at the matinee TAFE SA Fashion Graduate Parade - sponsored by Glam Adelaide - this Saturday?

Then enter this fantastic competition and win five VIP matinee tickets for you and your friends to see Adelaide’s future fashion designers in action!

The matinee parade starts at 4pm on Saturday 6 November.

To enter:
1. Go to the Fashion at TAFE SA Facebook page, ‘like’ it and suggest it to all your friends.
2. Send us an email at to let us know you’ve entered along with your daytime contact phone number.

The competition closes Friday 5 November at 12pm (noon), and the winner will be drawn at random and notified via phone.

For full terms and conditions contact